Female Nesting Habitat

  • Gently sloping sand, cobble, gravel, or slate lake shorelines and islands that are often south facing.
  • Rock outcrops in the forest and along lake shorelines.
  • Gravel pits and gravel roads.


Feeding and Basking Habitat

  • Slow moving dark waters of lake coves, fens with stillwater streams, vernal pools and marshes. 
  • Often found in shallow areas with lots of aquatic plants, places to warm in the sun, and muddy bottoms.  Associated with beaver-maintained wetlands.
  • Peat moss, water lilies, and shrubs like Sweetgale, and Leatherleaf are often present.


Hatchling Habitat

  • Emerge from underground nests in September and October.
  • Usually overwinter in wetlands, temporary pools of water, or upland forested areas.
  • Spend the winter buried down in the vegetation or underwater.


Adult Overwintering Habitat

  • Shallow pools and slow flowing streams in wetlands.
  • Can be buried under soft mud, sitting on the bottom, or suspended in the underwater vegetation.

* Protection of this habitat is critical to Blanding’s Turtle long-term survival.


Travel Corridors

  • Can be found in a variety of habitats as they move to and from their feeding, nesting, and overwintering areas.
  • These habitats include forests, open water, and roads.
  • Road kill can seriously affect the Blanding’s Turtle population. Refer to the 'Motorized Vehicles' page (under 'How You Can Help on Your Land') for information about turtles and roads.